The 1st Vice President of Nigeria Football Federation, Bar. Seyi Akinwunmi has reiterated that the plan of the present NFF Board and Management is to win the FIFA World Cup for Nigeria.
Akinwunmi said this on Sunday in Port Harcourt while addressing players and officials of the U-23 National Team, Dream Team, after its 2-1 victory over Congo in an African U-23 Championship qualifying game.
He said the NFF is proud with the display put up by the boys against Congo as this is what many Nigerians have been yearning for, and from what the boys have shown, they are at the verge of playing for the Super Eagles.
“Even though we should have beaten the Congolese by a wider margin, the NFF is happy with your display. I am sure that you players and the Coaches also feel that you should have won by a wider margin. Nonetheless, you have made us proud, you have made us proud not with the scoreline but with the football you played.
“A lot of Nigerians have been calling on television and the radio thanking us that we have shown Nigerians that we have footballers who are committed to winning a football match, and that is commendable because we believe that one day very soon, Nigeria can win the FIFA World Cup. In fact the plan of the present NFF is to win the FIFA World Cup. What has been lacking much of the time has been the passion for the badge on your chest.”
Akinwunmi said the players should at all times remember that there are millions of Nigerians who pray and fast for the team to win a match and as such they must realise that they carry the passion of millions of Nigerians. Challenging the boys to go to Congo and outscore the Devils so as to make sure of a place at the 2nd African U-23 Championship, the 1st Vice President commended the players for the high level of discipline.
Also speaking at the same reception, the NFF’s 2nd Vice President, Mr. Shehu Dikko said the boys have shown that they are the future of Nigeria football, adding that its not always all about winning, but about the future.
Assuring the boys that the Federation will do give every support to make the team soar in Congo and all the way to the All-Africa Games, the African U-23 Championship and next year’s Olympics, Dikko then urged the players to take advantage of the elite player program, that will help the players to keep fit and stay in shape.
“As for the league we have the program that’s called the elite player program, so any player who is not playing in the league and who wants to play in the league at least to keep in shape, you can come to us in the LMC, we can get you a club, we will pay you to play for a club and you don’t have to be contracted to the club.”
He added that it is the best way to go for the players to keep playing day in, day out before they secure contracts abroad.
Responding, the captain of the side, Azubuike Okechukwu thanked the NFF for their support and on behalf of the players promised Nigerians that they will take the battle to the Congolese in Pointe Noire and do the country proud.